So Scoble starts referring to all the negative publicity about Longhorn in general and WinFS specifically as "Myths". This is what we call spin. Or counter-spin. The myths could be spin and Scobles post counter-spin, or maybe Longhorn is spin, the myths are counter-spin and Scobles post is counter-counter-spin. Maybe you could call that a Re-Spin. Anyway. You see there have been some recent articles that claimed that parts of Longhorn were already being dropped or trimmed. Scoble jumps in and implies that these are just myths, (counter?)-spinning Microsoft as the victim.
In particular he says these are the myths he is hearing:
- Longhorn won't ship until '09
- Longhorn won't include WinFS
- Even if it does include WinFS, there won't be any support for networking or remote data.
Are you willing to bet your business on the above myths?
Now reading Scoble's spin you'd be tempted to believe that there must be a hard schedule and a tight set of features that MS is planning on shipping. That's what I believed when I asked for a such a fixed list. I'm willing to put my money where my mouth is and I wanted to get a hard set of features before entering a wager. So I asked:
Robert, In order for us to have a bet, we need to know what we are betting against. So would you be willing to provide hard numbers you are willing to stand by?
1. When will Longhorn ship. (Down to the month please)
2. What subset of features would you consider a success? How about a simple list of features currently promised. Feel free to add or remove from this list at your discretion.
A - T-SQL queries
B - multi-master data synchronization across other Longhorn machines
C- " other data sources
And to flesh out the list lets list the document formats that WinFS will be able to reliably extract meta-data from:
D - All Office Formats (this is a gimme)
E - JPEG/GIF/PNG
F - PDF
G - WAV/MP3
H - Outlook address book
This set of capablities is what I gleaned from .
So he can choose a wide open ship date and a list of features I extracted from Microsoft's own documentation. So did I get some hard numbers I could wager against? Oh no. Instead this is what I got for a response:
Joe, of course I can't predict the exact date. I can tell you the scheduled date is in 2006, though.
I'll have a list of features for you at Beta1 (which should be next year sometime). Really until it hits Beta1 we're just talking probabilities.
Like I said, for the next year you can pretty much say whatever you like about Longhorn and there's not much I can do to refute it.
So Robert Scoble isn't willing to hazard a guess at a shipdate, not willing to stand behind a single feature that is advertised on the Longhorn site, and yet still willing to play the victim. We've now found the true myth about Longhorn; that Microsoft has any idea what is it or when it will ship.